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If you cross the river Halys, you will destroy a mighty empire!

Twitter’s CEO and its co-founder urge other left-wingers to consider a recent article explaining “Why there’s no bipartisan way forward at this juncture in our history — one side must win”. It’s a long read – but almost any excerpt indicates which side the author is sure both should and will win. Trump…

“has alienated most of America and certainly all the growing political constituencies of the 21st century. He is turning the Republican brand toxic for millennials, women, Latinos, people of color, college-educated people, urban centers, the tech industry, and the economic powerhouses of the coasts, to name a few.

For a long time, Republicans have been able to hide their vile inner selves…

through a sophisticated series of veils, invoking cultural voodoo that fools a large enough number of Americans to stay in the game.

It is therefore almost a relief to the author that

Donald Trump has laid waste to that sophistication

so that it’s now obvious to all – or almost all – that

The Republican Party is all about rule by and for billionaires at the expense of working people.

Whereas before…

The Republican Party for the past 40 years has mastered using dog whistles to gin up racial divides to get their white voters to the polls.

now…

Trump just disposes of niceties and flatly encourages white nationalists, bans Muslims, walls off Mexicans, and calls out “shithole” countries.

I confess to some doubts about this – after all, not one Mexican has been walled off yet, and I have the impression that few muslims have in any sense been banned – but the author brooks no denial. And speaking of denial,

“The Republican Party is the party of climate change denial. Trump is the denier-in-chief, but there are 180 climate science deniers in the current Congress (142 in the House and 38 in the Senate), and none of them are Democrats. More than 59 percent of Republicans in the House and 73 percent of Republicans in the Senate deny the scientific consensus that climate change is happening, that human activity is the main cause, and that it is a serious threat.

If only I could trust the author’s counting ability – but since believers in his “scientific consensus” are believers in a statistical method that can extract hockey sticks from random noise, can I feel sure that the numbers of sceptics are growing as fast as he says?

The essence of Trump is that there’s…

No beating around that bush for the sake of appearances — Trump burned the bush down.

If only this were wholly true – but for once I’ll agree with the author: there is truth in it. The alternate realities of Scott Adams were never so vivid to me than at the moment I read these assertions of how Trump exposes the right while thinking that the very words I was reading showed how the Trump phenomenon exposes the left.

The author explains his simple and foolproof plan:

The way forward is on the path California blazed about 15 years ago. … reconfigure the political landscape and shift a supermajority of citizens — and by extension their elected officials — under the Democratic Party’s big tent. The natural continuum of more progressive to more moderate solutions then got worked out within the context of the only remaining functioning party. … Make no mistake: A reckoning with not just Trump, but conservatism, is coming.

In short, the author and friends have both a duty to reject all compromise and, now that Trump has exposed their enemies’ true nature, a 98.2% chance of winning this war they plan to hot up (or better – he doesn’t actually quote a percentage); after all, it worked in California. What could go wrong, since…

This is a civil war that can be won without firing a shot.

As Reagan once said, “It takes two to tango.” By contrast, a certain Adolf is merely the most infamous of many who have shown that it only takes one to start a war. Political correctness is all about ‘inclusion’ – except when it’s all about excluding more and more people for *isms and *phobias ever more broadly defined. If PC follows this advice to make US politics explicitly a conflict that “only one side must win”, then I predict that the prophecy will prove correct – but possibly also Delphic.

31 comments to If you cross the river Halys, you will destroy a mighty empire!

  • PapayaSF

    I predict Democrats are going to be devastated by the wave of scandals and indictments that will hit them before the midterms, so this fool’s prediction of a one-party state will be delayed for a while.

  • Snorri Godhi

    Niall earns praise for the classical reference.

    A couple of remarks about the Leyden article at the 3rd link in the OP.
    First and most obviously, an article that puts forward California as a model for the rest of the US, is … how to put it? let’s just say that it’s the same as saying that Greece is a model for the rest of the Eurozone, Venezuela for the rest of Latin America, North Korea for the rest of East Asia.

    Second: as much as it pains me to admit it, in one respect i agree with the article: there can be no compromise, because compromise with the suicidally insane, is itself insane. That is why i would not accept US citizenship, if offered, until i am convinced that the Democrats are no longer insane.

  • That is why I would not accept US citizenship, if offered, until I am convinced that the Democrats are no longer insane. (Snorri Godhi, April 8, 2018 at 8:47 pm)

    Sadly, as a UK citizen, I am ill-placed to say the same against a country that does still have both the first and second amendments in reasonably functional condition. More than my life separates me from the time when the UK had the equivalent of the second. A full decade and a half separates today from the days when Tony and friends started abolishing our equivalent of the first.

  • Alisa

    The comments to Jack’s tweet are encouraging.

  • the other rob

    Indeed, Alisa. Like the young family exercising proper trigger finger discipline in the first reply, I take great comfort in the fact that our side has almost all the guns.

  • Sean

    Actions speak louder than words (or tweets). Is he backing up his rhetoric and banning Trump from Twitter? If not, why not?

  • Bruce

    Hubris:

    /hjuːbris/

    Noun:

    Excessive pride or self-confidence. “The self-assured hubris among economists was shaken in the late 1980s”

    Synonyms: arrogance, conceit, conceitedness, haughtiness, pride, vanity, self-importance, self-conceit, pomposity, superciliousness, feeling of superiority;

    More: hauteur;

    Informal: uppitiness, big-headedness

    In Greek tragedy: Excessive pride towards or defiance of the gods, leading to nemesis.

    Antonyms: modesty

    Then, there’s this!

    https://www.knifecenter.com/item/CS92CRKBZ/cold-steel-92crkbz-liverpool-assassin-34-inch-unbreakable-cricket-bat

  • bobby b

    “This is a civil war that can be won without firing a shot.”

    This is a civil war that depends upon no shots being fired.

  • Paul Marks

    Another example of one of the ironies of our age – a rich capitalist, in this case the CEO (and co founder) of Twitter, de facto backing the Marxist forces (the anti Trump university educated Marxists – who have never worked in a factory in their lives) who would rob him (the Twitter CEO) and then murder him. “One would have to have a heart of stone – not to laugh” as the socialist Oscar Wilde said.

    Of course there are terrible problems with Donald Trump – most importantly his failure to even try and control wild Federal Government spending. But the Twitter boss does not even mention the real failings of President Trump – instead he just trots out the tired lies of the Frankfurt School of Marxism (“government for billionaires” “racist dog whistles”) which the Twitter Boss is too PIG IGNORANT to even know are from the Frankfurt School of Marxism.

    And I am supposed to care when rich big business types such as the Twitter Boss (who is busy giving tacit encouragement to the massive CENSORSHIP of conservative voices on Twitter and the rest of social media) end up being put in a Death Camp by the “nice” and “sophisticated” “educated” Marxists he is de facto backing?

    “Lenin” said that the capitalists would sell the Marxists the rope with which the Marxists would hang them – but “Lenin” was mistaken. In reality capitalists, such as the Twitter Boss, will GIVE the Marxists the rope and help in all their censorship and brainwashing campaigns – and then stand amazed when their “friends” rob and murder them.

  • Paul Marks

    “But Paul when the Twitter Boss sees the left start to do bad things he will draw back”.

    No he will not draw back. Take the example of California – once the “Golden State” now the state with the most poverty (in relation to the cost of living), a decline caused by wild government spending, crippling taxation (now set to rise even more – on companies not “just” individuals) and endless regulations.

    Does the Twitter Boss denounce the horrible transformation of California? No he does not – he explicitly cites the place as a model to be PRAISED (especially its de facto one-party-State – which he regards as a good thing). And what has happened in California is VERY MODERATE compared to the utter transformation that the university types (the people the Twitter Boss is backing) are planning – quite openly planning. The transition to a totalitarian society is what modern Progressivism is about – the Twitter Boss would know that if he was not so PIG IGNORANT, a person who just believes everything his teachers and university lecturers said.

    Yes the Twitter Boss will understand it all one day – but only when the words “hands behind your back” ring out and he steps ashore on the GULAG Archipelago.

  • Actions speak louder than words (or tweets). Is he backing up his rhetoric and banning Trump from Twitter? If not, why not? (Sean, April 8, 2018 at 11:29 pm

    When Stalin targeted a high-up in the communist party, he often did not start by denouncing the guy directly but instead targeted his more lowly-placed allies and subordinates. Sometimes he would wait until the main target was standing alone, like a melancholy king skittle, before rolling out the accusation machine against him personally.

    It is a safe guess that Dorsey is afraid of the consequences of banning Trump directly and the banning of conservative commentators from Twitter is partly compensative, but it would be a mistake to assume the technique has no power.

  • Edward

    If you cross the river Halys, you will destroy a mighty empire!

    But the Oracle never said which one…

    In the end, it was Croesus’ empire that was destroyed, not the Persian empire he marched against.

    I hope that’ll be the same for the progs. Sic semper tyrannis.

  • Mr Black

    When I see a patriot group actually shoot one of these petty tyrants I might start to believe that “the right” has the courage to do something more than talk in the face of advancing fascism. However I expect that I won’t be bothered by such an occurrence in my lifetime.

  • Pat

    So the Republicans are run by and for billionaires. Presumably such people as Carlos Slim, Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, Geof Bezos, Soros, Zucherberg and the guy who owns Twitter.
    I’m almost convinced that the Dems are run by and for billionaires who find it convenient to pretend to be on the side of the working man

  • Runcie Balspune

    The way forward is on the path California blazed about 15 years ago. … reconfigure the political landscape and shift a supermajority of citizens — and by extension their elected officials — under the Democratic Party’s big tent.

    Ah, yes, gerrymandering, surely the greatest act of democracy ever performed.

  • Johnnydub

    “The way forward is on the path California blazed about 15 years ago. … reconfigure the political landscape and shift a supermajority of citizens ”

    Citizens? Or invaders?

  • Johnnydub

    “This is a civil war that can be won without firing a shot.” – only if they succeed in abolishing the 2nd Amendment and seize all the guns…

  • “This is a civil war that can be won without firing a shot.” This assumes that shots have not already been fired.

    Steve Scalise was unavailable for comment for awhile there. I wonder what his thoughts are.

  • George Atkisson

    When civil war/session occurs, not if, when, things will get kinetic. At that point, the Progressives will not be allowed to say, “Oops. My bad. We changed our minds.” Their leaders and apologists will be hunted down and executed. Politics, media, entertainment, education – all of them. If only 10% of the armed citizens feel this way, that’s 15 million angry and motivated people looking for all those who made their hatred of freedom clear.

    Does an exterminator stop when he thinks he got half the cockroaches in the building? Are the rest going to learn their lesson and go away? Not going to happen. I hate this future and what will become the future America, but we will do whatever it takes to be left alone, unlectured, by those who declared themselves to be the righteous arbiters of society.

  • Snorri Godhi

    The way forward is on the path California blazed about 15 years ago. … reconfigure the political landscape and shift a supermajority of citizens — and by extension their elected officials — under the Democratic Party’s big tent.

    I, too, was wondering what “reconfiguring the political landscape” means. As for “shifting a supermajority of citizens under the Democratic Party’s big tent”, that presumably means getting many more Americans to vote Democrat. In other words, winning elections can be achieved by getting more votes.

    I did not read the full article at the link, however, so i was wondering whether there is some lesson to be learned from California about winning elections. (Some lesson, that is, other than driving the middle class out of the State, and potential illegal voters into the State.)

    Fortunately, Kurt Schlichter did the reading for me and it seems that my first impression was correct: the whole article says nothing more than the Democrats will win a “supermajority” if they get many more votes.

  • bobby b

    Snorri Godhi
    April 9, 2018 at 7:00 pm

    ” . . . the whole article says nothing more than the Democrats will win a “supermajority” if they get many more votes.”

    But “get many more votes” isn’t all as banal as “convincing more voters of the correctness of your position.”

    It’s dishonest redistricting.

    It’s manipulation of whatever electoral systems are in place.

    It’s the dishonest rhetoric of a biased media.

    It’s using the various arms and branches of government – such as the judicial – to limit the participation of those who might otherwise work against you.

    It’s the limitation of reach of messages that work against you through ownership of all of the portals of public “social” communication.

    It’s not as anodyne as the phrase “get many more votes” might imply. And it’s frighteningly effective.

  • Snorri Godhi

    Ah yes, bobby b, but the author was quite specific: California is the model. That means (if it means anything) that he wants the Democrats to emulate the tactics used by the Democrats in California, and not elsewhere; and it seems to me that most if not all the tactics that you describe, have been used everywhere in the US — without much success after 2008.

  • bobby b

    ” . . . it seems to me that most if not all the tactics that you describe, have been used everywhere in the US — without much success after 2008.”

    But those are the very tactics used to convert California to the progressive heaven it is now, continuing to the present.

    Had we not had a dishonest and biased media – had we not seen the great reach of the progressive themes pushed by Facebook and Twitter and the like – had we not seen, in the US and specifically in California, the blatantly manipulative redistricting used to convert many congressional seats to “safe forever” Democrat seats – or the court cases, many in California, overturning the clearly expressed will of the majority of voters – the political situation here would have been very different. These tactics are used today, in California and generally in the USA, to great success.

    To me, the point of the article was “we can win without firing a shot, if we can simply steal everything, as California has done.” I didn’t read it as saying anything so trite as “we’ll win if we get more votes.” It fit Schlicter’s theme to argue that this seemingly significant article said nothing of import – he’s nicely able to then extend that theme to “the liberals say nothing of import, ever” – but Hillary didn’t almost win on the strength of her philosophy. She almost won because of these tactics.

    Just this afternoon, the FBI raided the office of Trump’s personal lawyer, and took away all of the correspondence between him and Trump for review. Not a shot fired. But we’re closer to the California model as a result.

  • the other rob

    “Just this afternoon, the FBI raided the office of Trump’s personal lawyer, and took away all of the correspondence between him and Trump for review. Not a shot fired. But we’re closer to the California model as a result.”

    This, in particular, is troubling. If they succeed in bringing down Trump, they won’t like what follows.

  • Eric

    What really happened in California is the Democrats replaced much of the middle class with client populations. The manufacturing and defense jobs left for greener pastures (or were driven out), and now we have the demographics closer to São Paulo than what existed in previous generations – an oligarchy of obscenely rich people leading a small class of the wealthy technologists and state employees, supported by votes from people dependent on the state.

    Snorri is right – California really is the Venezuela of the US.

    And I don’t want to hear about racist dog whistles from the party of Obama. The man never found a racial division he couldn’t make wider and deeper for political gain.

  • If they succeed in bringing down Trump, they won’t like what follows. the other rob (April 9, 2018 at 11:10 pm)

    Only if we – or in fact I should say you, on the far side of the pond, as regards this particular case – dislike it enough. They are attempting it because they hope it will end in their chuckling to each other, “Did you see their faces!” I fear your mere dislike, if unaccompanied by counteraction, will not be disliked at all by them.

    (Our equivalent would be a conviction of the Brexitteers on some rubbish campaign finance law and an anouncement that Tony Blair had found a legal reason Brexit could not go ahead after all.)

    One trusts it will not happen in either case – the less so in ours if your outcome teaches them a lesson.

  • Thailover

    I wonder if this King twit understands that he’s spreading untruths or if he is simply lying on purpose. Republicans have never played the race card, in fact the Republicans freed the slaves from the Democrats. Republicans also created half a dozen black colleges as well as founding the NAACP and were the primary target of the first version of the KKK. Democrats practically invented identity politics.

  • the other rob

    @ Niall Kilmartin: In an attempt to avoid saying anything that might be misconstrued, I shall merely remark that my friends in law enforcement have a uniform attitude towards firearms confiscation. It’s not so much “No” as “Hell No!!!”.

    It might be different in, say, Chicago, but they’re fucked anyway. Any other time, I’d make a cheeky argument for the National Guards of a few states round this way heading up there to sort it out, but I suspect that we may be about to have our hands too full for such adventurism.

    I shall also observe that Kurt Schlicter recently wrote an excellent piece explaining how whichever form the civil war, that the left seems determined to have, takes, they lose.

    I typically say, in a flippant, throwaway, fashion that “we have all the guns”. Guess what? It turns out that there are both strategic and tactical advantages in, well, having all the guns.

    Who would have thought it?

  • Benaud

    We need to ban guns or we will fight a civil war!

    Democrats appear to be gearing up for the world briefest civil war. Subdue LA would tank what, some combat enginners and a couple of companies of tanks? Just

    cut the Aqueduct and take pot shots at the highway.

  • Julie near Chicago

    other rob, there used to be a yahoo group called 2ampd (for “2nd Amendment PD”), whose members are cops and non-cop-hating others in favor of the Second Amendment. It used to be quite active, but sadly activity has dwindled to one msg per week, and that’s if you’re lucky.

    On Chicago: I have had the same dentist for 800 years; our Young Misses are nearly the same age, and, when they were around two, shared a baby-sitter while the Moms were out putting biscuits on the table.

    He and I got to ranting about the gun-grabbers maybe 10 years ago, or more. He told me that as of then, his Young Miss lived in an apartment in Chicago and packed a Glock. He said she has several pals on the Chicago cops, who advised her to keep her mouth shut about the weapon but by all means to carry protection.

  • Paul Marks

    By the way the Lydians invented much and the Persians (in reality semi nomads) invented nothing – it would have been interesting if the Western Empire rather than the Eastern Empire had won in their conflict. Perhaps the Hellenistic Age would have begun centuries before it did.